A village on the French Riviera that stole our hearts is Haut-de-Cagnes, one of the villages perchés (perched villages) built in medieval times to escape the Saracen raids on the coasts.
From red of Esterel to white of calanques via Nice
Overlooking the blue, is the medieval part of Cagnes-sur-Mer with simple houses, tall and narrow, small windows, the red roofs, narrow streets, arches and towers: turn to this country gives fabulous views and an absolute serenity.
Perhaps this is why Auguste Renoir chose the Cagnes light, when tired and sick retired in the villa of Collettes, among olive trees, orange trees and a terrace covered of roses?
Among the goodies to visit Villa Kerylos, a reconstruction of a Greek noble house from the fifth century BC which it was built in 1908 in Beaulieu from the French historian and philologist Théodore Reinach. In the villa you feel the thrill of a journey through time and the mild climate throughout the year favors the green and the landing of sumptuous yachts.
Other views those of the Esterel mountains, the wooded hills at the eastern area of the Var department that encompasses the Maritime Alps south of Cannes, where the red rocks emerge from the intense blue of the sea.
It is considered, rightly, one of the most beautiful coastal of the world, to discover drive along the spectacular Corniche d’Or, Route 98, which winds the immense expanse of rocks, once a refuge of hermits and brigands. And if you avoid the months of July and August, the 32 kilometers between Cannes and Saint-Tropez, you can even be alone between the mountains and the sea.
Once in Saint-Tropez miss the walk on the docks where are reflected the pastel facades of the houses.
Worth a visit refined Musée de l’Annonciade that, kept in a deconsecrated chapel in 1568, collects expressionist masterpieces, pointillist and the wild colors of the paintings of the Fauve (2 Rue de l’Annonciade, Place Georges Grammont, Saint-Tropez – Tel. +33 04 94 178410 – firstname.lastname@example.org).
The landscape changes completely approaching Cassis, where pink and typically Provençal ocher give way to blue and blinding white of calanques which means escarpments and are a kind of fjords that stretch for 5,000 hectares.
All around the mountain ranges of Aubagne while Cassis, on the sea, is dominated by the fourteenth-century fortress of Château de la Maison des Baux.
We wanted to explore the calanques on boat. Starting from the port of the village the first calanque is Port Miou, the longest, but also the least wild. A little farther on is Port-Pin to which the pines on the steep cliffs still little, give a bright green background.
But the postcard landscape of the Calanques is located at En Vau, the preferred even by grimpeurs, climbers, who will find their paradise facing barehanded high walls smoothed by the sea and wind. The beach nestled between steep rocks is a tiny white and emerald gem set in the bottom of the creek. Before leaving shout something aimed at the bottom of the fjord: the blue colored echo will always be with you!
You can not go on the French Riviera without having to Monte Carlo in the Principality of Monaco, the smallest country in the world after Vatican City. Elegant lounge of Principality is the place du Casino where stands the Casino: if you want to get into it you are careful about how you are dressed. We, that were in t-shirt and jeans, we were only allowed in the slot machine halls. We “comforted” by walking on the terraces facing the sea and on foot along the entire circuit of the Grand Prix circuit in Monaco, the most prestigious Formula 1, characterized by steps which have become legendary as the viaduct at the Portier, the fastest section, and the Tunnel, dangerous for the sudden change of brightness.
On a promontory above the Principality of Monaco there is La Turbie, a country that owes its fame to the Trophée des Alpes, a monument commemorating the victory in 13 BC of Roman Emperor Augustus on the Ligurian tribes who had rebelled in Rome. The view through the columns of the port of Monte Carlo on one side and the medieval town on the other is truly spectacular!
Another jewel of the Cote d’Azur is Nice, a town overlooking the Baie des Anges, which covers nine kilometers of coastline with a dozen beaches.
It is impossible not to be fascinated by this city: walking on the long Promenade des Anglais, the center of which is the Negresco, one of the most famous hotels in the world declared a national monument, or among the fragrant flower market is held every day in Cours Saleya.
Or, again, by being kidnapped from Old Nice, a neighborhood reminiscent of the narrow alleyways of Genoa, then stopping at one of the many restaurants for a feast of seafood. A full stomach can reach the Cimiez hills to admire the masterpieces of Matisse, who wanted to be buried here, gathered in the seventeenth century palace that since 1963 is home to the museum (164 Avenue des Arenes de Cimiez, Nice – Tel. +33 04 93 810,808 – email@example.com).